Definition of orb in English:


Line breaks: orb
Pronunciation: /ɔːb


  • 1A spherical object or shape: a pale orb of hazy reddish light
    More example sentences
    • In the center of the vault was a pedestal, and on top of the pedestal was a spherical crystalline orb with some kind of necklace, or talisman beside it.
    • Atop the neck's silver rings was a necklace of four orbs of different color: blue, red, green and violet.
    • At the right, a turquoise orb rises above a glyphlike marking of black diamond shapes with arm-like appendages set against a purple ground.
  • 1.1A golden globe surmounted by a cross, forming part of the regalia of a monarch: a crown, an orb, and a sceptre
    More example sentences
    • This is a rare example of a once popular print and presents a traditional representation of the monarch with crown, orb and sceptre, the instruments of monarchical power.
    • And what should be made of the cross surmounting the orb?
    • Edward's is the first English royal seal to survive; the image of the king in majesty, enthroned with orb and sceptre, was borrowed from German models.
  • 1.2 literary A celestial body.
    More example sentences
    • When the Earth is at its mean distance from the Sun, the solar orb has an apparent angular diameter of 0.533 degrees.
    • She turned towards the door, her eyes still wide as moons and her face as pale as the orb itself.
    • But the sun was setting very early these days, and with the dense clouds overhead, that pale orb might as well not even be there.
  • 1.3 (usually orbs) • literary An eye: two wild staring orbs which flashed around the room
    More example sentences
    • Emma felt uneasy under the close observation of those pale blue orbs and hastily looked away.
    • She looked into his eyes again, pale grey orbs that look almost white.
    • Sometimes I get busted, I blush and avert my orbs.
  • 1.4 Astrology A circle of up to 10° radius around the position of a celestial object: within an orb of 1° of Mars
    More example sentences
    • He refers to the orbs as the circles, radiations or beams of the planets ‘through which they may be joined by either corporal conjunction or aspect’.
    • An orb of only 1 degree should be allowed for progressions.
    • A minority group of astrologers, notably the famous Marathi astrologer, Katveji recommended using tighter orbs when examining sade-sati.


late Middle English (denoting a circle): from Latin orbis 'ring'.

More definitions of orb

Definition of orb in:

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day kerf
Pronunciation: kəːf
a slit made by cutting with a saw